The hashtags#Spain_protect_criminal #España_protege_criminal #اسبانيا_تحمي_المجرمين #Espagne_protège_les_criminels” are trending and going viral as thousands of social media users continue to lash out at Madrid’s collusion with Algerian military junta to smuggle in Polisario chief with false travel documents though he is wanted by Spanish justice for crimes against humanity.
Across social media, especially Twitter, many users made their rebuking opinion quite clear. “I can’t believe, Spain is hiding and protecting one of the biggest terrorists and criminals in the world…what shame”, says one of the posted tweets.
“After Germany refused to receive him in its hospitals due to cases of rape and murder, the Polisario leader Brahim Ghali entered #Spain with an Algerian diplomatic passport and a forged name (Med Benbattouche)”, says another tweet.
Others called on the Spanish magistrates to carry out an investigation into the fraudulent entry of Brahim Ghali in the country to seek medical treatment for covid.19. They also urged Spanish justice to look into the serious accusations of torture and human rights violations lodged against him.
Several human rights associations have called on the Spanish authorities to arrest immediately Ghali and hold him accountable for the crimes he committed in Tindouf Camps under the watch of the Algerian army.
Morocco has demanded an explanation from the government of Pedro Sanchez as Rabat views the Spanish move contrary to “the spirit of partnership and neighborliness”.
Madrid has not yet responded officially to Morocco’s anger and disappointment as the North African Kingdom is still weighing all its options.
Relations between the two countries, neighbors and partners, cannot get worse than the current troubling foggy situation. Rabat and Madrid are doomed to reach an understanding and restore mutual trust to preserve their shared economic, political and geostrategic interests.
The left-wing coalition government of Pedro Sanchez should rise up above political fray and pressure of Podemos party (which supports the Polisario) because the credibility of his country, government and of the judiciary institution is at stake.
Also in stake are the southern Mediterranean stability and the excellent security cooperation built by the two countries in the fight against terrorism, illegal migration and drugs trafficking.
The scandal over Brahim Ghali’s entry into Spanish territory with falsified documents to escape international arrest warrant can be resolved by handing the fugitive to justice to account for his crimes.
In doing so, justice will be served for the victims, proving that no one is above the law. Furthermore, Madrid will prove its adherence to neighborliness and friendliness with Rabat as the two shares a deep and longstanding history.